It’s that time of year again, May the Fourth Be With You. A day where fans celebrate the Star Wars movies, going all the way back to the 1977 film, Star Wars (later subtitled as Episode IV: A New Hope) to the anticipating the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
This year’s Star Wars is extra special, because this year marks the 40th anniversary of the first Star Wars and the whole franchise itself. It’s amazing to see how much of a phenomenon that Star Wars has become over the past 40 years, it is apart of pop culture and is beloved be millions of people.
Star Wars first released on May 25th 1977 and was a critical and commercial success, even though at the time, 20th Century Fox gave very little support for marketing the film beyond licensing t-shirts and posters, partly because they had little doubt that the film would be successful. When Star Wars first released, it immediately broke box office records and was one of the first blockbuster films. At the time, George Lucas couldn’t predict how successful Star Wars would be.
Here is what the Wikipedia about the popular phrase, “May the Force be with you”:
The expression “May the Force be with you” has achieved cult status and is symbolic of the Star Wars legacy. The line has been said by at least one character in each of the Star Wars movies. In A New Hope, there are several mentions of the Force in reference to Luke Skywalker, by Obi-Wan Kenobi (“Use the Force, Luke” and “The Force will be with you, always”) and Darth Vader (“The Force is strong with this one”).
The famous line is actually said by General Dodonna after explaining the Death Star attack plan to the Rebel pilots. It is said again by Han Solo to Luke, right before the attack on the Death Star battle station. The line is also said by Luke Skywalker at the end of The Empire Strikes Back. A variant, “May the Force be with us” is said by Admiral Ackbar in Return of the Jedi.
In the prequel trilogy, the line is said in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace by Qui-Gon Jinn to Anakin Skywalker, and also by Mace Windu and Yoda. Obi-Wan Kenobi says the line to Anakin in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, who repeats it back to him.
The line is also said between Anakin and Obi-Wan again in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, where Mace Windu additionally says “May the Force be with us all”.
The reference to the phrase “May the Fourth be with you” first used on May 4, 1979, the day Margaret Thatcher took office as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Thatcher’s political party, the Conservatives, placed a congratulatory advertisement in The London Evening News that stated “May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations.” This reading of the line has also been recorded in the UK Parliament’s Hansard (Source: Wikipedia).
May 4th is unofficially Star Wars Day, the actual official Star Wars Day is May 25th because that is the date that the first Star Wars film premiered on, back in 1977. However most people call May 4th, Star Wars Day because it is easier to remember and it makes for a nice pun.
So Happy Star Wars day and May the Fourth Be With You!!
And tomorrow is Revenge of the Fifth.